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Lay-led Church Conflicts Erupt in Baptist Churches

Ethics Daily ran my latest article today, which is entitled "Lay-led Church Conflicts Erupt in Baptist Churches." It deals mostly with two recent conflicts as some church members have attempted to oust their pastor. The two churches are Two Rivers Baptist Church in Nashville, Tennessee and Shiloh Baptist Church in Washington, D.C. Other similar conflicts in large Baptist churches are noted, and the piece includes some commentary from Todd Rhoades, who writes about conflict and other church leadership issues at


  1. Anonymous5:44 AM

    Hey Kaylor,

    I left this comment on another site to see if we could dialogue on it. Maybe I'll try here...

    So what can Churches do to keep these situations in-house, instead of going public? - Maybe return to the suggestion complaint box?

    If members felt as though they could submit recommendations (vent stuff); and that they would be addressed; maybe Sunday night meetings (even if submitted anonymously; maybe this would curb the public activity... while dealing with the concerns?

    My wife and I have a situation right now that we would like to confront the elders with, but feel if we did, that would be the end of the Welcome mat for us.

    Stifling people is not the answer, so what is? R...

  2. Thanks for the comment! You ask really good questions that I'm not sure I have great answers to. However, there are two things that I think could help.

    1. Pastors need to realize that they do not own the church. It is not theirs and they should not try and rule it as their personal little kingdom.

    2. The people need to be given a real voice with real influence (such as in some of the ways that you mentioned). If they feel like they are heard within the church then most will not take their complaints outside the church.


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